American singer and composer James Taylor is misinformed of the real peace and order situation in the country, an official of the Philippine National Police (PNP) said.
But Senior Supt. Dionardo Carlos, PNP spokesman, said they respect the decision of Taylor not to hold his scheduled concert in the Philippines to protest the alleged rampant killing of suspected drug pushers and users.
“We cannot fault him for basing such decision on incorrect information about our country’s peace and order situation,” said Carlos in a statement.
Police and staunch supporter of the Duterte administration have been blaming the media, both local and foreign, and the “noisy few” for allegedly blowing out of proportion the real score in the current war against illegal drugs which was launched in July 1.
More than 2,100 suspected drug pushers and users were killed since then while a separate figure of nearly 3,000 was reported killed by vigilante group although the PNP stated that not all of them are drug-related.
For Carlos, the PNP might have proven to Taylor that he was wrong should he decide to go on with the concert.
“Coming to the Philippines will be a firsthand opportunity to prove for himself that there is no alarming EJKs (extra-judicial killings) happening in the country,” said Carlos.
Carlos emphasized that Taylor was the real loser in his decision to cancel the concert.
“At the end of the day, it is a loss for him to experience the warmth and hospitality of the music-loving Filipino audience,” said Carlos.
And more importantly, the veteran American musician also lost his supposed earnings from the concert.
NO LET UP
Earlier, PNP Chief Director General Ronald dela Rosa said the war against drugs will continue even if it means more lives of suspected drug pushers and users would be lost.
This, despite condemnation from local and international groups. Recently, the United States cancelled its regular $400 million worth of aid to the Philippines due to human rights issues.
He said the Duterte administration will not stop until the problem in the illegal drugs is entirely wiped out.
(AARON B. RECUENCO)